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I've just finished replacing the front struts on my 2003 Element 2WD. I had to use a pickling fork to get the tie rod ends out of the strut. The boots were pretty torn and ragged so I knew I had to replace them anyway. I am having a hell of a time getting the locking nut loose. People are telling me it turns opposite and that's just confusing the hell out of me. I'm worried I'm tightening the thing. So, if I am looking at the passenger wheel well, tie rod pointing toward me. Do I turn that locking nut clockwise or counter clockwise to loosen? And is it the same direction for both passenger and driver side? Also, what do you guys recommend for breaking loose a nut that's seen 10 years of winters?
 

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Counter clockwise. A pry bar applying pressure to the top of the ball joint while you are loosening, will help limit it turning. If you have an impact wrench, this is the time for it. PB rust water, will penetrate the rust, and help free the nut. I have found that the Moog problem solver ball joints, are far superior to the original ones. I hope this helps!
 

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MM 2005 EX, AT southwest WI
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PB rust eater.
Kroil or PBlaster and a good cleaning of the threads with a wire brush, then heat the jam nut selectively with a torch. A butane one is usually adequate here. Then while it's still hot put two open end wrenches on -one on the nut and one on the tie rod end flats- so that you can squeeze them to loosen the nut. With a padded glove on you can get quite a bit of grunt that way. It loosens counterclockwise, just have a good look at the threads while you're cleaning them.
 
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